In possibly the most humiliating commercial climbdown since the New Coke fiasco, Hong Kong's PARKnSHOP supermarket chain announced amid great fanfare that they would cease to give out free plastic bags from Wednesday 21st November, only to announce on Monday 26th (with less fanfare) that they were abandoning the scheme.
The move was widely welcomed as a significant contribution to reducing the 8.4 billion plastic bags clogging Hong Kong's landfills each year, but some legislators criticised it for its lack of transparency on how the voluntary 20 cent plastic bag fee for charity would be used.
Perhaps the idea of letting a little light into a corner of the Li empire was too much for the supermarket chain's management? At any rate, instead of fine-tuning the scheme in response to feedback, they chose to make themselves look like a bunch of idiots by reversing the policy after only a few days - and compounded stupidity with hypocrisy by saying the company was "still supportive of environmental protection on principle". This is about as meaningful as a carnivore saying that he supports vegetarianism on principle, or George W. Bush posing as a peacemaker.